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Sustainability to me means creating something and/or living in such a way that is not harmful to environment and can maintain long-term ecological balance in order for our future generations to live safely and be able to meet their needs. I really think this class is important because sometimes we get in the habit of our everyday lives and forget that by changing something in our routine, we could potentially be saving our planet in some small way – whether that’s by recycling, using solar power/energy, or even just riding our bikes to and from class. It makes me think that someday if I ever have children, I want them to be able to grow up and live a healthy life like I had and to know that I did something to help make that happen – our future generations deserve to be able to meet their needs.

The 11th Hour movie was interesting to me in many ways. It revealed that aspects of the Industrial Revolution may have instigated what filmmakers argue is an “environmental crisis”. Nature is converted into a resource by growth and expansion and politics and economics play a huge role in that. There is exponential growth of population and too many people using too many resources. We must be more cautious for our future. There are key environmental issues we face today such as climate change/global warming, hurricanes, deforestation and ocean dead zones. There isn’t one living system that is improving today and we need to take it seriously as human beings living on this planet to help fight and change this. Some approaches for sustainable design are to change the object of desire, act differently, be aware of global issues, use the cradle-to-cradle effect and to be frugal.

Fashion & Sustainability

If we consider the pros and cons of fashion, we can discern where it can begin to help or hinder our progress toward sustainability. Fashion design captures our aesthetic interest and imagination and allows us to take pleasure in originality, newness and creative distinctiveness. Fashion solutions can bolster sales and prevent company failure thus maintaining market viability and workforce employment. The con of fashion in design is associated with how it can affect our values. An emphasis on the latest fashions can foster bogus values that over-emphasize materialism as finding fulfilment and happiness. Instead of relying on product longevity, we should be exploring design with humility and assume that whatever we design today will not be appropriate in the future. I feel like what this article is trying to say is that yes, fashion captures our interest because we think we must have the newest and most modern things in our closets, but as fashion goes in and out of style and things from the past come back in and out of style, maybe we don’t need to always buy the newest things sold in stores. Let’s find a way to use the cradle-to-cradle effect to reuse or develop change toward practices that are both socially and environmentally responsible.

The Wildest Thing gave us the freedom to explore our ideas of problems related to environmental and social issues we are facing. It really makes you realize just how many issues there are out in the world and by passing it along to another group and reading what the previous group wrote, it opens your mind to how many solutions there are to help fix the problem. There are many different perspectives and ideas just in one room – makes you think how many solutions there are to sustainability problems if everyone in the world were to come together and think of.

While interacting in my learning community, I realized that even though we have had a lot of classes together the past 3 years, not everyone really knew each other. We came to find out we have similarities and connections like where we are from or people we may know. We have also learned that we are pretty good at coming up with good ideas while being put on the spot. During the Wild Things exercise, I thought we had really good ideas and were able to build off of each other and understand what the other person was trying to say or explain.

My carbon footprint value measured 8.2 tonnes and my ideal habbit is 2 tonnes. I was told by eating less meat, I could save between 40kg and 60kg CO2 per year… Growing up on a farm, we always had our cattle butchered for steaks, hamburger meat and such so I always have easy access to meat and my family sends it with me to college to cook with. If I could make at least one day each week a meat free day, this could make a difference. I wasn’t sure exactly the temperature of my washing machine so I put 60 degrees Celsius and I was told to turn it down to 40. Also tumble drying is very intensive. By hang drying outside, I can save CO2 and energy.

Easter Island has had significant environmental impacts including uncontrolled growth in tourist numbers causing problems in waste and management issues, problems with sewage and threats to water quality. There needs to be sustainability for tourism management in order for us to keep islands alive and well. We don’t think about these issues because we don’t think about the well-being of the island, but only think about ourselves and our experience we will get. Same with the Dust Bowl – we are promoting an environmental disaster. We cause the destruction and ignore our responsibilities, and continue living the way we do in hopes that things will get better but more disasters like Hurricane Harvey are still happening today.

As an industry, the clothing industry is locked into a cycle of unsustainability. The relationship between productivity (added value) and resource use has entered into a chronic and unsustainable pattern. Everything from materials used to production and disposal are all issues in our current field. Being able to talk about these issues in our classes, has me ready to go out into the work force ready to find solutions to these problems and to think about them more.

As we dig deeper into sustainability class, I am anxious of what all we are going to learn and what all we will discuss that I may not have ever thought of. It takes one good idea & people to back it to make a difference!

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About KensiLawson

I am a senior Apparel Merchandising major at Oklahoma State University graduating in December 2017!
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